“Parting is Such Sweet Sorrow”



Dear struggling summer school student (about to enter 5th grade),

I was your summer school teacher for 3 weeks, 3 hours each day. Today, I said goodbye to you.

I (hope) you learned from me:

  • the value of working hard;
  • the importance of basic skills (math facts);
  • learning can be fun;
  • you are capable of so much more than you think you are, truly.
  • never, ever give up.


I learned from you:

  • a few of you are wracked with emotional pain (dad is in jail, parents are divorcing, etc.);
  • you like learning to be fun and you’re quick to learn;
  • you have some amazing teachers at your school (!);
  • “arm” in Spanish is brazo;
  • your lack of sleep might have to do with the violence on your street, late at night;
  • you hope to be the first in your family to go to college.


Work hard. Never give up. And you shall make it there.



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